Published online by Cambridge University Press: 29 August 2010
Augustus De Morgan was born in the year 1806 at Madura, in the Madras Presidency. His father Lieutenant-Colonel De Morgan had held appointments, some of them staff situations, at several stations in India; and at the time of his fifth child's birth had chosen Madura in preference to Vellore on account of its comparative quietness. This choice was fortunate, for the battalion of Colonel De Morgan's regiment commanded by Colonel Fanshawe was at Vellore during the time of the mutiny of the native troops; and thus escaped the terrible outbreak in which several English officers lost their lives, and Colonel Fanshawe was murdered. Even at the quieter stations there was cause for alarm from the general disaffection of the native troops, and my husband's mother told how she, being then near her confinement, saw Colonel De Morgan, when the sentries were changed, creep out of bed to listen to the Sepoys, that he might learn if any plot were in agitation, about which information might be given with the password.
Voyage to England
When Augustus was seven months old his father and mother came to England with three children, two daughters and the infant. They sailed in the Duchess of Gordon, one of a convoy of nearly forty ships. The Commodore, Captain (afterwards Admiral) Sir John Beaufort, was on friendly terms with my husband in after life.